Foster families play a crucial role in animal rescue. For so many goldens that come into GRREP care, the foster home serves as a transition from a life of neglect into the world of beloved companion.
Many dogs that end up in our care may never have known the comforts of home and the love of a family. Foster families provide these dogs a place to heal their spirits and sometimes their bodies while they wait for their forever families to find them.
Fostering is a rewarding albeit sometimes challenging experience. It may be difficult to say good-bye, but you'll know it has been worthwhile when your foster pet and his forever family leave with their shadows hand in paw. Read Toby's Tale, the extraordinary story told by the two foster moms who worked with him over a 6-month period and the forever family who adopted him.
Read Stella's Story, about her medical condition and the story of her diagnosis, treatment and future outlook. She has been in foster care for almost a year and now with a diagnosis and effective treatment she is ready to go to her forever home.
This section is designed to answer the frequently asked questions about fostering and give you information on how to join our foster program or become involved with the Golden Retriever Rescue of El Paso in other ways.
Why should I become a foster parent for the GRREP?
By providing a temporary home you may be saving a golden’s life as well as helping it to achieve a successful adoption. Dogs that are adopted out of foster care are much more likely to remain in their adoptive homes for life. Because you will know the dog the best, you will have a strong voice in matching your foster dog to an adoptive family.
Where do the Golden Retrievers come from?
Many of our rescued dogs were rescued as strays or come from area shelters, some of which have little or no funding for treating rescued or sick animals. Others are surrendered by owners. All dogs are examined by a veterinarian and carefully evaluated .
What will I need to do?
Foster homes are responsible for the daily care of the foster animal including: feeding, socializing, exercising, grooming, observing behavior and temperament, and most importantly providing love and security during a difficult time in a dog’s life.
Do I have to be home all day to foster?
The reality is that few dogs have the luxury of having their people home all day and fosters are no different. You can work outside the home and still foster, although there is a limit to the amount of time the animal can be left alone. For the safety of the foster, your own pet(s), and to protect your home, we recommend the use of a crate to confine foster dogs whenever you cannot directly supervise it.
What do I have to do to get the animal ready for adoption?
Mostly, they just need love and attention. Some will need house training and crate training. Others will need to gain or lose weight. If you want to start basic obedience training for dogs, that is great, but it is not required. Having another dog in the home already eases obedience training. You will be surprised by how much a foster dog learns from observing your forever dog(s).
How much does it cost to foster?
We only ask that you provide good quality food and lots of love. You may have additional expenses for any toys that you choose to provide. The Golden Retriever Rescue of El Paso will provide all veterinary expenses and medications, unless you choose to donate these expenses. All purchases made on behalf of your foster are tax deductible because we are a 501(c) (3) corporation.
Will I become attached to the foster pet?
Probably. Rescue is not without tearful good-byes. However, you will feel great warmth in knowing that you helped your foster golden move onto a home for life.
What if I can't keep my foster any longer?
Although it is best for pets to remain in one home, we realize that life sometimes takes unexpected turns. If an emergency arises or the animal is not working out in your home, you can contact the foster care coordinator to find a new foster home.
What if I have questions or problems with a foster pet?
In addition to the foster care coordinator you will be provided with a list of GRREP contacts who you may contact whenever the need arises.
I'd like to foster, what do I do next?
Once your family has decided to foster for the Golden Retriever Rescue of El Paso, you may begin the process on-line. We ask foster families to complete the foster application. Once your application has been received, the Foster Care Coordinator will contact you to talk in more detail about your responsibilities and answer your questions.